As we prepare to celebrate The Fatima Centennial at St. Joseph the Worker thru November 26, 2017, it helps for us to have a little background, and so for the next few months we will be getting to know our Lady of Fatima with some historical background and stories compiled by Fr. Joseph Previtali, a priest from the Archdiocese of San Francisco, and Adjunct Instructor of Dogmatics, St. Patrick's Seminary, Menlo Park.
Part XI: THE JUNE APPARITION CONCLUDED in the same manner as the first one in May, with Our Lady departing towards the east, from which she had come, and disappearing into the "immensity of heaven." The upper leaves of the little holm oak tree remained for several hours stretched and bent towards the east.
The pattern of the communication of Our Lady with the children remained the same as before: she conversed with Lucia, who could both see her and hear her. St. Jacinta could see her and hear her. St. Francisco could only see her and could not hear her.
The 50 or so persons present at the June apparition were a consolation to the three children. The onlookers knew something special had happened. None of them saw Our Lady, but Maria Carreira reported hearing a faint sound, "like the buzzing of a bee," from the top of the tree when Lucia reported that Our Lady was speaking to her. Others noticed the brief dimming of the sun's light and the bending of the branches and leaves of the tree. Other saw the "lightning" and a little gray cloud that came and went as the apparition did.
Despite these gifts of consolation, the children were faced with a great deal of suffering from the incredulity of those closest to them. Their mothers especially were alarmed by the apparitions, as the intensity of the situation was now increasing. Their parish priest, Father Manuel Ferreira, suspected that the apparitions might be real but of demonic origin. On June 14, he closely questioned the children and concluded that they were not lying about the apparitions. When he suggested that they might be from the devil, the children indignantly rejected the idea. In the end, the careful priest could not make up his mind about the origin of the apparitions, even as he concluded that the children were telling the truth.
The doubt of Fr. Ferreira would become a month-long spiritual and emotional trial for Lucia, who greatly respected the authority of her pastor. Her heart would be eased at the next month's apparition, in which Our Lady would reveal to her a great secret. "In my second account I have already described in detail the doubt which tormented me from 13 June until 13 July," Lucia wrote, "and how it disappeared completely during the Apparition on that day."
Next Week: Part XII of the fascinating story and history of Our Lady of Fatima.
Check out our brand new parish App: "SJW – Berkeley" With our new parish App you can quickly access Mass & Confession times, parish bulletin, prayer request, easy online giving options, etc.
Donate by TEXT
You can make a one (1) time donation or a recurring donation with the ease of your smart phone. Follow these steps below:
Step 1) Enter the number : 77977
Step 2) You can now enter the letters "SJW" in the message section.
Following the final blessing at our Masses, please join in as the celebrant priest leads the congregation in praying the "St. Michael Prayer." May God bless us with His spiritual protection.
First of all, I would like to say thank you, to all who light up our church with votive candles and prayers!
A votive candle is an offering made to God through the intercession of the Saints and it helps add beauty and a sense of awe to our St. Joseph church. Again, I thank all of you who prayerfully make these votive offerings and are "lighting up" our church with your prayers.
However, despite posted signs, announcemnents, bulletin and hand out notifications asking people not to bring "outside" candles into our church, we still have one or two folks who insist on purchasing candles from secular means and lighting them in our church instead of make a proper "offering." A candle donation for a parish is an "offering" which is much different from a secular purchase.
And importantly, candles not obtained directly from St. Joseph the Worker Church are strictly forbidden due to church insurance policies — they are a potential danger to us, and they make a mess.
For these reasons, all outside candles brought into the church will be removed and thrown away at the conclusion of each Mass or church service. Thank you, for your understanding.
- Fr. Kenneth Nobrega